I Carry One For Emergencies

OK.  I live in my RV.  BUT...  The travel expenses and the setup effort has made me always carry a tent.

Which Tent?

I live by myself with my dog so floor space is not real critical.  But height is critical.  I need a tent at least shoulder height.  With my weak knees, I must be able to stand up and sit down inside my tent.


I like a tent with a canopy top.  These tents have a mesh top which is then covered by the canopy.  In hot or humid locations this is critical.  If it rains, the canopy is critical or anything touching the top of the tent will produce a water leak in exactly the place you do not want one.

Architecture -- Poles

If the tent has more than 4 poles, you are in trouble.  I sent up and take down the tent myself.  With 4 poles this is possible.  With more than 4 poles, read the directions: you need two or more people to set the thing up.  And you need a lot of patience and time.

I have a tent with 3 poles but it is not tall enough.  Visit REI to see a collection of tents.  Costco or Sam's Club may have two or three tents -- and they are not concerned about complicated architectures.

I have a portable, nylon, dog kennel.  It collapse like those circular windshield shades.  Nifty. Instant setup and tear down.   I saw a movie the other day. "Congo".  In the movie they had tents like my dog kennel.  I need to get me one of these!


I have noticed a variety of tent floors.  I do not know but some are tougher than others.  You are not backpacking so weight is not your concern.  Tough is your concern.  Get a tough floor.


You are setting this tent up when you are tired and maybe have little or no daylight left.  A tent that is easy to set up is worth its weight in gold.

Extra Equipment


Costco has solar powered flash lights.  Unbelievable.


For sitting on inside the tent while dealing with your shoes and changing clothes


If you need to stay in one place for more than one day


For sitting outside the tent.  I find the collapsing chair with the side table ideal for eating my sandwich, drinking my soda, and reading my book.


You cannot eat by flashlight


I have this nifty auto-inflating mattress.  It is thin for backpacking use but it is tough and easy.

Bed Roll

Maybe a sleeping bag.  Maybe just sheets and a blanket.


I need a pillow.  Maybe you do not.

Nylon Sack

For dirty clothes.

Ice Chest

Small -- just for sandwiches and drinks.  I have one of those with a wheeled cart.  Then I can move my other things around easily.

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Written:  2010          Updated:  May 24, 2010          Back To Top